cover image The Black Dove

The Black Dove

Steve Hockensmith, , read by William Dufris. . Tantor Audio, $34.99 (0pp) ISBN 978-1-4001-0605-9

William Dufris provides an appealing down-home delivery to his narration of Hockensmith's third adventure featuring the Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson–emulating brothers, Gustov “Old Red” and Otto “Big Red” Amlingmeyer. The summer of 1893 finds the cow-punching detectives out of work, out of funds and out of sorts as they try to navigate wicked San Francisco. When an old acquaintance from their short time with the railroad is murdered, the brothers use their “detectiving” and “deducifying” skills to search for the killer. The investigation leads them deep into Chinatown, where they encounter ruthless hatchet men, Chinese crime lords, dark opium dens, corrupt cops and deadly tongs. Dufris imbues “Big Red” 's Watsonesque narration with a twangy cornpone accent that borders on caricature, but enhances the laugh-out-loud humor laced throughout. He impressively drops the accent quickly and completely to portray the wide variety of characters populating this highly entertaining romp. Simultaneous release with the St. Martin's Minotaur hardcover (Reviews, Nov. 5). (Mar.)